Running for State Office

Running for State Office is both fun and rewarding. The chance to serve Michigan DECA’s 8,800 members is an exciting opportunity and a big responsibility. Being elected as an officer is an honor… but serving entails a lot of commitment, hard work and dedication. Michigan DECA encourages potential candidates to talk to their parents, chapter advisor, employer, guidance counselor and principal to discuss the responsibilities involved in holding a state office.

Rewards of being a Michigan DECA State Officer include:

  • Personal satisfaction and growth
  • Development of life-long leadership skills
  • Travel to exciting places, and meeting new people
  • Plan the Michigan DECA State Leadership, District and State Career Development Conferences
  • Visit high schools and universities
  • Recognition for your chapter and community

The qualifications to run for a State Office:

  • Active membership in an affiliated Michigan high school division chapter
  • Must have held a responsible position at the chapter level
  • Must be a Junior in high school. (No other grades are eligible to run for a State Office, since State Officers can only serve during their Senior year in high school.)
  • Recommended by the chapter advisor and the school administrators
  • Have good speaking and writing skills

Once you become a State Officer, you will be allowed to compete in any individual event at the District or State level. You may compete at the International Conference if you are named as a qualifier at the State Conference.

What kind of training will I receive?

  • In April at the International Conference (attendance required), newly elected State Officers will attend training sessions. If you are competing, these sessions will be worked around your competition schedule.
  • In May, you will attend a training camp for State Officers (attendance required).
  • In July, you will attend the Emerging Leader Summit (attendance required).
  • Additional training will be available during State Officer meetings throughout your term of office.


What do I need to do?

NOTE – All forms for 2022-2023 Candidates will be posted by December 2021.

  1. Study the 2022-2021 State Officer Candidate Guidebook.
  2. Complete the 2022-2023 State Officer Candidate Application.  Sign the appropriate pages, and obtain the other signatures (guidance counselor, chapter advisor, chapter member, principal, parents).  Also obtain two recommendations from adults (employer, teacher, etc.)  Mail the original signed pages to Michigan DECA by January 2022 (specific date to be announced).  Scans are not accepted.  Pages that are mailed must contain original physical signatures.
  3. Register for the State Officer Candidate Screening.  (More details posted by December.)
  4. Attend the State Officer Candidate Screening in Lansing in February 2022 (specific date to be announced).  The screening panel consists of current State Officers and Michigan DECA Alumni members. At the screening, potential candidates will participate in a candidate interview, present a 2 minute speech on “DECA, and what it means to me”, and participate in a skills activity. All candidates must pass the interviews.


What happens next?

  1. Prepare your State Officer Candidate Flyer, which will be distributed to voting delegates for the State Conference. Michigan DECA must receive the completed flyer by EMAIL no later than March 1, 2022. Failure to do so will mean that your flyer will not be provided. Flyers may not exceed one 8 1/2” x 11” page.
  2. Prepare your campaign. After being approved by the Election Committee, you will receive guidance for your online campaign. Candidates cannot post anything about their campaign or that they are running for office until they are given approval and posting regulations after they have been approved to run for office.
  3. Attend the Candidate meeting during the State Conference.  Attendance is mandatory.
  4. Candidates will give their campaign speech during the Election Session at the State Conference.  Candidates will have up to two minutes for their speech. Make sure your speech has content that is of interest to the student members.
  5. No campaigning can take place after (date/time to be announced).

If you have any questions about being a State Officer, your best resource is to contact a current State Officer. You can also contact Mr. Michael Parr, Michigan DECA’s State Officer Coordinator (and a past State Officer) at